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Thread: Pre-AdLib PC sound

  1. #51

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    Quote Originally Posted by Trixter View Post
    Look for the "Echo 1000", an adapter for the Tandy 1000 EX and HX special slots. I have one but haven't had the time to set it up and test it yet. I dumped what I could here: ftp://ftp.oldskool.org/pub/drivers/S...20Electronics/

    Latest date on the disks is 1987, so a quick estimate on when the Echo 1000 was available is 1987.
    OK, found more Echo products:

    Echo PC - mentioned in "Braille Monitor" from January 1986 - https://nfb.org/images/nfb/publicati...1/bm860112.htm
    Echo PC+ - ISA card, (C) 1987 - https://sites.google.com/site/flytra...cards/echo-pc-
    Echo PC2 - (C) 1988 - http://www.matrixsynth.com/2016/10/s...ho-speech.html

  2. #52

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cloudschatze View Post
    These were released in 1988, for what it's worth.
    OK, Roland D10, D20, D110 are all from 1988, removed.
    Casio MT-540 and CT-460, however, seem to be from 1987:
    http://awolfe.home.xs4all.nl/studiocasioMT540.htm
    https://reverb.com/item/3607758-casi...white-on-black

    Also, regarding an omission, the Creative Music System was originally released in Singapore/Malaysia during the same month the Ad Lib MSC was released in North America - August, 1987.
    Indeed, the video linked in the original post claims that Game Blaster was from 1988, but CMS was from 1987, only rebranded to "Game Blaster" in 1988.

    Current list:

    1981 - IBM PC Speaker
    1981 - Votrax Type n' Talk (SC-01-A based later model)
    1982 - Votrax Personal Speech System (SC-01-A based)
    1983 - IBM PCjr SN76496, also in Tandy 1000 (1984)
    1983 - Standard Microsystems PC-Talker (Votrax SC-01 based)
    1983 - Tecmar PC-Mate Speech Master ISA card (Votrax SC-01-A + National Semiconductor Digitalker)
    1984 - IBM PCjr Speech Adapter
    1984 - MPU-401 with MIF-IPC or MIF-IPC-A
    1984 - Votrax Votalker IB (ISA card, SC-02 based)
    1985 - NEC SAR-10, "Audio Response Board"
    <=1986 - Street Electronics Echo PC
    1986 - IBM PC Convertible Speech Adapter
    1986 - Mockingboard from the Bank Street Music Writer package
    1986 - Tecmar Music Synthesis System / Music Magic Synthesizer
    1986 - Yamaha FB-01
    1986/87, probably never released but supported in games - Microprose The Entertainer

    Also possibly released before AdLib:

    1987 - Casio MT-540 and CT-460
    1987 - Covox Speech Thing
    1987 - Covox Voice Master
    1987 - Creative Music System
    1987 - IBM Music Feature Card
    1987 - IBM PS/2 Speech Adapter
    1987 - Roland MT-32
    1987 - Street Electronics Echo 1000
    1987 - Street Electronics Echo PC+
    1987 - Votrax Votalker IB 2000, 6511 based software ISA card
    1987? - Yam Educational Software SoundBuster

  3. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xacalite View Post
    They're not. Here is a well-researched reference:
    https://generror.wordpress.com/2010/...o-keyboards-2/


    And another:

    Quote Originally Posted by "Latimer, Joey. "Music by the Numbers." Compute!, Dec. 1988, pp. 42.
    Casio MT-540 MIDI Keyboard." This is a new minisized MIDI synthesizer that includes built-in stereo speakers, PCM digitally sampled sounds and sound effects, and a complete digitally sampled percussion kit. It's one of the best-sounding Casio minikeyboards I've heard."
    I'm sure other examples exist, where I've come across nothing authoritative citing a 1987 date. Ideally, the manual would list a year of publication, but the scanned examples I've come across for the MT-540/CT-460 (shared) do not.
    Last edited by Cloudschatze; September 13th, 2017 at 01:04 PM.

  4. #54

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    OK, 1988 looks more plausible for MT-540, removed.
    But CT-460 may be from 1987, moved to the end of list, with a question mark.

    If they are both from 1988, it would reduce the list of MIDI-connected devices to FB-01 and MT-32.

    1981 - IBM PC Speaker
    1981 - Votrax Type n' Talk (SC-01-A based later model)
    1982 - Votrax Personal Speech System (SC-01-A based)
    1983 - IBM PCjr SN76496, also in Tandy 1000 (1984)
    1983 - Standard Microsystems PC-Talker (Votrax SC-01 based)
    1983 - Tecmar PC-Mate Speech Master ISA card (Votrax SC-01-A + National Semiconductor Digitalker)
    1984 - IBM PCjr Speech Adapter
    1984 - MPU-401 with MIF-IPC or MIF-IPC-A
    1984 - Votrax Votalker IB (ISA card, SC-02 based)
    1985 - NEC SAR-10, "Audio Response Board"
    <=1986 - Street Electronics Echo PC
    1986 - IBM PC Convertible Speech Adapter
    1986 - Mockingboard from the Bank Street Music Writer package
    1986 - Tecmar Music Synthesis System / Music Magic Synthesizer
    1986 - Yamaha FB-01
    1986/87, probably never released but supported in games - Microprose The Entertainer

    Also possibly released before AdLib:

    1987 - Covox Speech Thing
    1987 - Covox Voice Master
    1987 - Creative Music System
    1987 - IBM Music Feature Card
    1987 - IBM PS/2 Speech Adapter
    1987 - Roland MT-32
    1987 - Street Electronics Echo 1000
    1987 - Street Electronics Echo PC+
    1987 - Votrax Votalker IB 2000, 6511 based software ISA card
    1987? - Casio CT-460
    1987? - Yam Educational Software SoundBuster

  5. #55

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    I guess this belongs here.... DigiSound-16 from Micro Technology (1984):

    DigiSound-16

    A device allowing the user to digitize and reconstruct high-fidelity audio. The DigiSound-I6 is capable of full 16-bit audio digitizing and playback, with 8-bit and 12-bit formats also programmable for less stringent audio requirements.
    The device is connected to the user’s system via two parallel ports. The sampling rate can be as high as 100 kHz in mono, or 50 kHz in stereo, and it is programmable by the user. Low-pass filters are plug-in modules that allow any mix of sample rates to be used in any installation.
    A built-in, first-in-first-out buffer of 32K RAM eliminates the need for buffering in the host computer and allows continuous with-disk operation in systems without DMA controllers. The buffer’s status is shown on a front-panel bar graph display.

    (List Price: $2,995)
    Micro Technology Unltd.
    2806 Hillsborough St.
    Raleigh. NC 27607
    Last edited by VileR; October 15th, 2017 at 03:53 PM. Reason: added url

  6. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by VileR View Post
    I guess this belongs here.... DigiSound-16 from Micro Technology (1984):
    Holy crap, that sounds really amazing. However, some parts of the description don't quite make sense -- If it connects via two parallel ports, then how does it provide a 32K FIFO? Unless they meant the FIFO was on the device, but if THAT is the case, then how are they getting 50KB/s input from a standard parallel port?
    Offering a bounty for:
    - Documentation and original distribution disks for: Panasonic Sr. Partner, Corona PPC-400, Zenith Z-160 series
    - Music Construction Set, IBM Music Feature edition (has red sticker on front stating IBM Music Feature)
    - Any very old/ugly IBM joystick (such as the Franklin JS-123)

  7. #57

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    Amazing, indeed!
    50 kHz, 16-bit, stereo - that would require 200 KB/s HDD throughput... was that possible with 1984 PCs? What was the interleave for the original IBM 5170 HDD?

    https://www.mtu.com/support/mtuaudioproducts2.htm
    Looks like in 1984 it was just for MTU-130, not for PC.
    PC implementations were released in 1986 and 1987, so I'm adding them, of course.

    Edit: come to think of it, ADC and DAC of this quality in the early 80s shouldn't be a surprise - Compact Disk was out in 1982, so there had to be some digital equipment for CD mastering, only it wasn't PC-based in the first years.

    ***

    1981 - IBM PC Speaker
    1981 - Votrax Type n' Talk (SC-01-A based later model)
    1982 - Votrax Personal Speech System (SC-01-A based)
    1983 - IBM PCjr SN76496, also in Tandy 1000 (1984)
    1983 - Standard Microsystems PC-Talker (Votrax SC-01 based)
    1983 - Tecmar PC-Mate Speech Master ISA card (Votrax SC-01-A + National Semiconductor Digitalker)
    1984 - IBM PCjr Speech Adapter
    1984 - MPU-401 with MIF-IPC or MIF-IPC-A
    1984 - Votrax Votalker IB (ISA card, SC-02 based)
    1985 - NEC SAR-10, "Audio Response Board"
    <=1986 - Street Electronics Echo PC
    1986 - IBM PC Convertible Speech Adapter
    1986 - Mockingboard from the Bank Street Music Writer package
    1986 - MTU DigiSound-16 with a DMA interface, for PC/XT Digital Audio Workstation
    1986 - Tecmar Music Synthesis System / Music Magic Synthesizer
    1986 - Yamaha FB-01
    1986/87, probably never released but supported in games - Microprose The Entertainer

    Also possibly released before AdLib:

    1987 - Covox Speech Thing
    1987 - Covox Voice Master
    1987 - Creative Music System
    1987 - IBM Music Feature Card
    1987 - IBM PS/2 Speech Adapter
    1987 - MTU DigiSound-16 and new interface card, for PC/AT ISA-bus
    1987 - Roland MT-32
    1987 - Street Electronics Echo 1000
    1987 - Street Electronics Echo PC+
    1987 - Votrax Votalker IB 2000, 6511 based software ISA card
    1987? - Casio CT-460
    1987? - Yam Educational Software SoundBuster
    Last edited by Xacalite; October 14th, 2017 at 09:50 PM.

  8. #58

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    I somehow managed to omit the URL from my previous post... here it is.
    Since that's from PC Magazine's 'new hardware' section, I did assume that IBM PC compatibility was implied; but yes, I suppose that wouldn't really work with 1984-era PC tech. The 5170 itself is covered for the first time in that very same issue, so that couldn't have been the target host.

  9. #59

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    Very interesting so far. Seeing the Mockingboard in this thread was a surprise...

    A bit of history: The origins of the Music synthesizer cards on Apple II and later PC is the A.L.F. "Apple Music Synthesizer" later renamed to MC16. This card was introduced in 1978 and implemented a PSG-like structure with 3 voices, very high frequency accuracy and 8bit envelope/voice. The SN76489 was inspired by this implementation and the AY-3-8910/YM2149 was 'inspired' (cloned) from the TI-chip.


    The Mockingboard on the Apple II was sold in its 'common' form as "Mockingboard A" and "Mockingboard M" in 1983 and used 2x AY-3-8913 (8910 in a smaller package) as well as up to 2x Votrax chips. The Mockingboard went through several changes that were not completely compatible with each other. The Mockingboard was produced by "Sweet Micro Systems". The "Mockingboard M" was a bundle option for the Bank Street software.

    It may be a possibility that the "Mockingboard PC" was never actually sold.

    -Jonas

  10. #60
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    Location
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    Quote Originally Posted by stynx View Post
    It may be a possibility that the "Mockingboard PC" was never actually sold.
    There is some extra information on that in this blog: https://trixter.oldskool.org/2011/09...-mockingboard/

    So apparently there was a card bundled with the PC version of Bank Street Music Writer, which was at times advertised as a "Mockingboard", but is not marked as such on the card itself.
    It was also sometimes referred to as "Mindscape Music Board", it would seem.

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